In West Palm Beach, Florida, police arrested Changsheng “Sean” Zhao for allegedly having sex with a 14-year-old girl. He met her on Tinder, a dating app.
Police say the two had sex twice. The story from Zhao’s lawyer, according to The Palm Beach Post: This 14-year-old, who Zhao allegedly met at a bar, said she was 21. She later admitted her real age, the lawyer claims.
“You could have put me in serious trouble because you are underage,” Zhao allegedly said, according to a police report obtained by The Post. “The legal age is 18, I believe.” He allegedly tried to make her delete their text messages, too.
The lawyer’s story, at least as reported by The Post, won’t help Zhao in court. In Florida, ignorance of the “victim’s misrepresentation” of her age “cannot be raised as a defense.” He also can’t use her consent or any purported “lack of chastity” to get him out of trouble.
According to jail records viewed by LawNewz.com, Zhao was arrested Thursday, and released on Friday after posting a $50,000 bond. He faces one count of lewd and lascivious behavior with a victim age 12 to 16.
On June 8, a Tinder spokesperson announced they’ll no longer be allowing users under age 18.
Update – August 9, 2017: According to a court filing viewed by LawNewz, prosecutors dismissed Zhao’s case due to insufficient evidence.
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